An Open Letter to Dr. Anthony FauciRoundup
tags: public health, COVID-19, Anthony Fauci
Martin Halpern is a professor emeritus of history, Henderson State University, and the author of UAW Politics in the Cold War Era and Unions, Radicals, and Democratic Presidents: Seeking Social Change in the Twentieth Century. For twelve years, he was a research analyst with the Michigan Department of Public Health and the staff directory for the Director’s Task Force on Minority Health and chief author of the task force report Minority Health in Michigan: Closing the Gap.
October 15, 2020
Dr Anthony S Fauci, MD
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
BG 31 RM 7A03
31 Center Dr.
Bethesda, MD 20814
Dear Dr. Fauci,
You have made many contributions to public health and to basic and clinic research over your long career. You have been attempting to control and reduce the impact of the coronavirus on the public. The administration you serve has failed to follow your recommendations, leading to tragic unnecessary deaths. The epidemic is still out of control. Although President Trump and many Republican officials have sought to undermine you, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll in September, 68 percent of the public have a great deal or a fair amount of trust in you. The figure for independents is 71 percent.
You’ve served presidents of both parties and maintained a non-partisan stance throughout your career. I am asking you to reconsider your non-partisanship at this critical moment in our country’s history. The continuation in office of this administration is a danger to public health. Given President Trump’s embrace of white nationalism and far right extremists and his threat to remain in office no matter the outcome of the election, this administration is also a threat to democracy. I believe you can make a unique contribution to the defeat of President Trump by speaking out.
The New England Journal of Medicine has called for the defeat of President Trump, a first for the journal. Scientific American has endorsed Vice President Joe Biden, also a first.
The Hatch Act forbids civil servants from engaging in partisan political activity. It would be a sacrifice for you to resign in order to speak out. I believe the dangers to democracy and public health we face and the continuing loss of life due to a callous president require you to consider taking this step.
I wish you well and hope you can take the kind of action that will make it more difficult for Mr. Trump to hold on to power and continue to wreak havoc on the health and well-being of the public and our democracy.
Professor of History Emeritus
Henderson State University
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